EA is prototyping in-game ads even as we speak SuperNayr

Electronic Arts has a long, storied history of trying to wring more money out of gamers after they’ve purchased a game — now, it appears, the company’s hard at work on its next generation of in-game ads.

EA CEO Andrew Wilson admitted as much on the company’s Q4 earnings call: when an analyst asked about “the market opportunity for more dynamic ad insertion across more traditional AAA games,” he said the company’s already working on it.

“We have teams internally in the company right now looking at how do we do very thoughtful implementations inside of our game experiences,” said Wilson.

I don’t want to take Wilson out of context. If you read the full question and answer (page 12), you’ll see that in-game ads aren’t the thing he’s most excited about. He says it’s “still early on that front,” repeatedly says EA needs to be “very thoughtful,” and suggests the bigger ad opportunity is “beyond the bounds” of games — outside of a game itself.

“As we start to build community and harness the power of community beyond the bounds of our games, how do we think about advertising as a growth driver in those types of experiences?” he asked.

As a writer working for a website that relies on advertising, I guess I can’t take issue with that… but I can’t say hearing that makes me want to join the community for an EA title.

Anyhow, if in-game ads are the endgame for EA, might I suggest the company look back to the one time it tried ads that were actually cool? Fifteen years ago, Mercenaries 2 let you literally blow that shit up. Let me nuke your ads, EA, and I might tolerate them.

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